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The churros are coming! YOU, OUR DINING CRITICS

The churros are coming! The churros are coming… the churros are here in Leaside!

They started showing up in the odd spot in Toronto a few years ago. Now they’re right here at a restaurant that’s part of a big U.S. chain, the Local Public Eatery, the new place at Laird and McRae that used to be the CIBC building.

Olga Nikiforova, Millwood Rd., knows them well. Her two companions, Janice Canning, Randolph Rd., and Brenda French, Donegall Dr., were happy to share one order even though “we couldn’t quite finish our main courses,” said Canning. “And it turns out that Olga is something of a churros aficionado.”

CanninDining Critics for Juneg: “I’d never tasted them before or even heard of them.

“A single order was enough for the three of us. There were five long, thin pieces of dough, something like a bread stick and a bit looser than a doughnut. They were lukewarm, sprinkled with sugar and came with a hazelnut-chocolate sauce for dipping. They were quite lovely!”

Nikiforova: “I was delighted to find good churros so close to home! It is a traditional Spanish treat, so typical of Madrid, but is also hugely popular in Mexico.

“The churros at The Local Eatery were soft but crispy, as they are meant to be, generously sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar (a bit too much for my taste) so it was a nice surprise for me. I will take my son who loves churros to the Eatery (and for tacos as well!)?”

It might have given a wrong impression to say the diners could not finish their main courses, which they described as generous and filling. It wasn’t because they didn’t like them. In fact all three gave the new place a solid thumbs-up on food, atmosphere and service.

In fact Canning could not have been happier with her main course, Caesar salad.

Canning:”?It was the most unusual and creative Caesar I’ve ever had, and definitely very tasty!

“Unlike most Caesar salads prepared with romaine lettuce and lots of garlic, this dish came with the most delicious, tender roast chicken, bacon pieces and chopped avocado on a bed of green leaf lettuce covered in a tangy (but not too spicy) grilled jalapeno dressing.”

Nikiforova, a fish lover, ordered it for both appetizer and main:
“The Baja fish tacos were a light and tasty appetizer, smartly presented in a soft tacos shell filled with basa white fish, shredded cabbage, pico de gallo and topped with a good combination of fresh vegetables.

“The fish and chips came with one large piece of beer-battered basa white fish, crispy on the outside and moist and flaky on the inside. House-made tartar sauce, fresh cabbage cole slaw and a large serving of French fries. It was delicious.”

French ordered yam fries as an appetizer: “They came with a dipping sauce of creamy lemon truffle mayonnaise and were just delicious. The grated parmesan was a terrific touch!

“The press burger was extremely flavourful and better than homemade. The bun was baked in-house and the garden salad came with fresh garden peas and light dressing.”

Canning: “We liked the casual atmosphere. Lots of reclaimed wood and metal, sturdy wooden tables, upbeat music and a relaxed, laid-back vibe. There’s an outside patio too but it was still a bit cool so we sat inside on the second floor.

“The kitchen is upstairs as well and it’s semi-open, so the kitchen staff are partly in view – we were exchanging banter with the chefs.

“The staff were young and friendly. Not only our own waitress, but also the bartender came by our table to make sure we had everything that we needed. They were quick to follow up and everyone was extremely friendly – a great atmosphere!”

Nikiforova: “They;re appealing to a younger crowd but everyone would feel comfortable and welcome, especially given the high level of service. The wait staff was extremely warm, friendly and quick to follow-up.

“It was very good value for the money spent. We each said that we would definitely recommend the Local Public Eatery to family and friends and would certainly return ourselves.”

French: “I will return with my family. They would love the selection of craft beers.”